Kiknu, which means “our home” in Mi’kmaq, is Nova Scotia’s first long term care home on a First Nation community. It is home to 48 community elders who will continue to be surrounded by Mi’kmaq culture and traditions.

We’re Hiring

At Kiknu, our team of Great People are immersed in the rich heritage of Eskasoni, surrounded by the warmth of Mi’kmaq culture and values.

As we embark on this journey together, we’re hiring qualified individuals who share our commitment to holistic elder care rooted in First Nations principles.

  • Licensed Practical Nurses
  • Registered Nurses
  • Continuing Care Assistants
  • Hospitality Manager

Information about Kiknu

Kiknu is a licensed long term care home with 48 private suites. This means, residents who live at Kiknu will have needs that require 24-hour care supporting all activities of daily living, including nursing services, medication management and personal care.

Because Kiknu is licensed by the Department of Seniors and Long Term Care, there will be an application process before someone moves into the home. This can be coordinated through Continuing Care.

If a resident is assessed and needs the level of care offered at Kiknu, they will be offered a suite in the home. At that time, the team will work to ensure the resident and their family feel at home and are surrounded by things that bring joy. This includes:

  • Asking questions to learn about physical and clinical needs, likes, dislikes and wishes. 
  • Help with furniture, clothing, personal items, etc., you need to bring when you move in. 
  • Ensuring your room has the right equipment like a hospital bed, access to a nurse call system, accessible washroom, etc. 

Quick Facts

Kiknu is Inspired by Turtle Island and designed in the shape of a turtle with a designated central gathering place for elders, family, and loved ones. There are a lot of interesting facts to discover about the community.

Philosophy of Service

Fundamental to Kiknu is the belief that residents who call it home will have a say in the care they receive. They will make their own decisions about their quality of life and well-being, including the kind of food served, the activities that take place and even overall operations. As much as possible, they will also receive care and service in their language of choice. This is called “resident-directed” care.


This new home for elders will offer holistic health care and services that reflect First Nations culture, values and attitudes. It allows residents to live comfortably and with dignity. Kiknu will have private rooms and washrooms, 24-hour care and service by on-site health professionals, a designated space for palliative care, laundry service, an on-site salon/barber and internet and cable in each room.

The Kiknu Long-term Care home is inspired by Turtle Island and designed in the shape of a turtle. Courtesy of the Province of Nova Scotia


Kiknu is dedicated to providing holistic, safe, and loving long-term care that honors Indigenous culture, language, and traditions. We create an environment where residents feel honored, fostering their well-being through cultural connection, language preservation, and a commitment to their physical and emotional needs.

Community Consultation

Kiknu will be designed with space to welcome the greater community. A central gathering space will be available and act as a community hub, providing resources, programs and opportunities for engagement that will keep elders connected to their community. Some ideas being considered are having a community liaison, community partnerships and a regular newsletter.

A Partnership with Shannex

Shannex will act as an operating partner, alongside the First Nations community of Eskasoni, in the development of this new home. Shannex will manage the development of the home overseeing the construction, preparedness, operations and management. Eskasoni will collaborate on design, programming and staffing to ensure a care program and home environment is developed that reflects the values and attitudes of our greater community.


Kiknu envisions being a trailblazing Indigenous long-term care home, fostering cultural revitalization, holistic care, and community empowerment. We strive to create a loving environment where Indigenous elders and residents thrive, embracing their heritage, respected for their wisdom, cared for with dignity and surrounded by love.

The home includes several common areas where residents can gather. Courtesy of the Province of Nova Scotia

Social Activities

There will be plenty of recreation and rehabilitation services for elders who live at Kiknu, including daily activities and programs, celebrations and physical activities that will be developed based on the preferences of residents. Mi’kmaq culture and traditions will be incorporated into all activities, such as singing, drumming, storytelling and gardening.

Building Design

Mi’kmaq culture has been a primary consideration in the building design, which is intended to reflect the art, crafts and ceremonies of the Mi’kmaq people blended with the safest and most advanced design for long term care. This includes a traditional building structure located on beautiful, landscaped grounds featuring a garden and/or a wigwam. Eskasoni family trees or clans will be featured on the walls, and a warm and inviting atmosphere with plenty of seating for both residents and visitors will be offered throughout the home.

Kiknu’s Values are based on the 7 Sacred Teachings


We honor wisdom by promoting lifelong learning, embracing the teachings of our elders, and valuing the knowledge and experiences of our residents and community.

We cultivate a loving and compassionate environment, fostering deep connections, empathy, and kindness among our residents, families, and staff.

We treat everyone with respect, recognizing and honoring the inherent worth and dignity of each individual, their cultural identity, and their unique contributions.

We embody courage by advocating for the rights and well-being of our residents, challenging systemic barriers, and creating a safe space where voices are heard and valued.

We uphold honesty by promoting open and transparent communication, building trust, and maintaining integrity in our relationships with residents, families, and the broader community.

We embrace humility by acknowledging that we are part of a larger interconnected web of life, valuing the wisdom of our ancestors and nurturing a sense of gratitude and humility in all that we do.

We seek truth by fostering a culture of authenticity, accountability, and continuous improvement, striving for excellence in our care practices, programs, and services.
The Seven Sacred Teachings originate from the Seven Grandfather Teachings from the Anishinaabe people and have been adopted by many (but not all) First Nations, Métis and Inuit Peoples.
The front lobby of the Kiknu Long-term Care home includes seven poles, each representing one of the traditional Mi’kmaq districts in the region. Courtesy of the Province of Nova Scotia

Looking for more Information?

If you have questions about Kiknu, please fill out the form below and we will be happy to answer your questions.

Kiknu Contact Form

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I have visitors?

This is your home. Friends, families and loved ones are welcome to visit you. This is also home to many other people and we ask that visitors respect others’ and their spaces.

What safety protocols are in place?

Your safety and the safety of visitors is our priority. Entrance into the home is monitored 24/7. In the event of an emergency, we need to know who is in the building at all times and everyone will be asked to sign in and out at the front desk, this includes residents.

What do I do if I want to plan an outing?

If you are planning on being out of the home for any reason, the person accompanying you will need to sign you out and make sure they are aware of your care needs, including any medications that need to be taken while you are away.

What is the food like at Kiknu?

We know that quality food is important. We have worked with the community to incorporate traditional meals into the menu at Kiknu.